barrel life/ caliber questions to help with next build

Discussion in 'Rifles, Bullets, Barrels & Ballistics' started by lovdasnow, Jun 8, 2009.

  1. lovdasnow

    lovdasnow Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    953
    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2005
    hey guys i need your expertise on caliber choice. I've got a custom 300 RUM that I am having a blast with, but at the rate I'm shooting this thing I'll need a new barrel every other year(or sooner). it's too much fun.

    I have a rem 700(.308SA) that would like to be rebuilt. it will be for long range(1k yds)rocks, paper, varmints, etc
    I think I would like something in the 6mm range(lighter recoil, great bullet selection), and was leaning toward the 6x47 lapua. accuracy is #1, but right behind that is barrel life. i would like to get over/around 2k shots per barrel.

    I would also like it be able to get complete powder burn and good velocity with a 22-26" barrel because I will be using a suppressor as well, and would like to keep gun length reasonable. what would be a good length for the 6x47?

    so, do you guys have any recommendations for moderate to long barrel life, with great long range performance? like i said, leaning toward the 6x47 lapua, am i leaning the wrong way?

    thanks a lot
     
  2. Kevin

    Kevin Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    259
    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2002
    The 6.5x47 may be a little better for your application than the 6x47. You should have better barrel life and more powder burn in a shorter barrel.
     

  3. Michael Eichele

    Michael Eichele Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    3,829
    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2003
    If you want good accuracy and great barrel life, get another 308 barrel.
     
  4. lovdasnow

    lovdasnow Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    953
    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2005
    I'd like a little more speed than the .308 with higher BC bullets that i feel the 6x47(or 6.5x47) will offer. I may be way off, but i think i could shoot a lot higher bc bullet at a faster speed with decent barrel life out of the lapuas. I think i would burn out a barrel a lot faster than normal in a 308 shooting 155's to around 3k fps, and still not have the BC's the 6-6.5 bullets offer. please, let me know if i'm way off.

    so, i guess i don't understand why the 6.5 would be better, i guess i need to read more about it. does it have something to do with less overbore? what would be the optimal barrel lengths for the 6x47 and the 6.5x47?

    I'll keep reading about these lapuas, and maybe expand my search a bit. i'll look into the 6.5 a bit more.

    any other advise while i'm researching? thanks a lot guys
     
  5. trebark

    trebark Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    3,475
    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2008
    gonna have to go +1 on the .308. Speed is one thing, but accuracy is another. While the 308 is not a barn-burner in the speed department, it sure can be a tack driver and even with fairly hot loads (175g SMK with max loads of Varget or RL15) you will be able to put 8k+ or more rounds down the barrel before it might need a new one.
     
  6. lovdasnow

    lovdasnow Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    953
    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2005
    wow, 8k! i was reading a bit on snipers hide(big 308 fans) and a lot of those guys burned their 308 barrel up in 3-4k.

    this article is what is selling me on the lapua 6.5x47 Lapua Tactical TackDriver

    really good shooting gun, with a TI can, and a 25" barrel. it shoots lights out.

    here is a snippet from that article, "Compared to the .308, the 6.5x47 Lapua has dramatically less recoil. Firing through the sound suppressor, a new long-range shooter who I put behind the rifle exclaimed, "It feels like a .22!" Because it was burning almost ten less grains powder, the sound suppressor was even more effective with the 6.5x47 than with the .308 it was designed for.

    thanks guys, i'm still researching a lot.
    does anyone know the barrel life on the 6.5?
     
  7. trebark

    trebark Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    3,475
    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2008
    One thing you need to do is determine your own definition of a barrel that is 'shot-out'. My definition would be for the barrel to begin to average 50% loss in accuracy compared to when it was at it's best. For instance, if the a rifle shoots .5moa, I would consider the barrel shot-out when it began to shoot .75moa. Does that mean I would replace it? maybe not.

    I remember an article I ready many years ago in Shooting Times magazine. The author (can't remember who) had a .220Swift with a factory barrel. He shot the gun until it would not consistantly hold 1moa at 100 yards. It took years to get to that point. He then had the barrel removed and sawn in half so that he could examine the bore. To his surprise, the rifling was completely obliterated for more than half of the barrel. Only the last 10" (of a 26" barrel) had rifling.
     
  8. Michael Eichele

    Michael Eichele Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    3,829
    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2003
    With double base powders, I am running the 190 VLD at 2750 in a 26" barrel. The BC of the 190 VLD is published at .570 and I am getting a bit more than that (.585).

    If that doesnt run with the 6.5 lapua then the next choice is a long barrel 6.5x284, but then there goes your barrel life. The recoil is harder with the 308/190 load than the 6.5/140. If you shoot alot, the 6.5 wont beat you up as much and may appeal to you more.
     
  9. lovdasnow

    lovdasnow Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    953
    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2005
    i would not go with 6.5-284. those are some good numbers you are getting with the 308, can't disagree with them at all. less recoil is always nice for spotting your own shots, but it's not the end all. it's not like the 308 is hitting very hard anyway.

    so, would your reasoning for staying away from the 6.5x47 be short barrel life? i guess part of me is leaning toward it just because it's something different as well as being a proven shooter(not that the 308 is not).
     
  10. Michael Eichele

    Michael Eichele Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    3,829
    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2003
    The only reason I would stick to the 308 for general fun, paper shooting and practice is the barrel life plain and simple. Albiet, the 65 Lapua is different and sometimes those can be fun too. I have been thinking about some type of 6.5 myself just for a change of scenery. I still have a hard time taking the plunge due to the very very long life of the 308 barrel. Whatever a given shooters definition of "shot out" is, the 308 barrel will reach that point much later than any of the 6.5's.

    IMHO, the only disadvantage the 308 has over the 6.5 is wind. It is also my opinion and observation that wind is like any other factor. It is observable and can be compensated for. Yes the 6.5 is more forgiving when a estimate isnt accurate. However, with a bit of practice and experience, you will learn to dope the wind according to whatever it is that youre shooting.
     
  11. lovdasnow

    lovdasnow Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    953
    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2005
    the more I've been reading the more I'm leaning toward the 6.5x47. it's hard to say about barrel life because I can't find very many people that have burned one up yet. A lot of the reading I've done suggest that it should be in the 2500-3500 range as long as you're not really pushing them hard.

    I like the idea of shooting something a little different than the 308(shallow, I know)
    I like using less powder, and less recoil! I think that with a suppressor on it, I should be able to spot my own hits from around 200yds out.
    I can get lapua brass.
    I really like the wind bucking capabilities of some of those long 6.5 bullets. It will be more like doping for my 300RUM as well(closer ballistics)
    You can seat those long bullets in a SA mag well, and have them right up in the lands as well.

    The benefits of the 308 are longer barrel life.
    And you can get loaded shells for them anywhere in the world pretty much.
    I think I might be able to get away with a little shorter barrel to use with the can.

    I think that if I can get 2500-3000rnds out of a barrel, i'll be happy. Maybe because I've been comparing everything to my RUM in regards to barrel life, so it seems like a lot.

    I can always build the 6.5, and if I feel i burn the barrel to quickly than I will go to the 308, but obviously I'm leaning toward the 6.5 over the 6x47and 308.
     
  12. TMR

    TMR Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    555
    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2006
    We have done the same thing as you are looking at. I built 6.5x47 Lapua exactly like our 338 Edge's. We compete with our 6.5's throughout the year and they feel exactly like our Edge's coming hunting season.

    I know guys that have 2000+ rounds of hot loads 6.5's and they still shoot well under MOA, most under 1/2 moa. I have both a 6x47 and a 6.5x47. My 6.5 gets the nod most of the time. Something to be said about a 130gr .620BC bullet at 3000+ fps. I would go with the 6.5x47 and not look back. Although the 6mm version is faster and uses less elevation, the windage is basically the same or less with the 6.5 as the range increases.

    Another thing to consider, is to run a ballistics chart for your RUM and compare it to the 6x47 and the 6.5x47 to see which one closely match's. This way, when you practice, you will almost be in "time" with the RUM. Here are the velocities that my personal rifles run and most of my customers have run:

    6x47 Lapua, 105 Berger: 3150-3250fps
    6.5x47 Lapua, 130 Berger or 130 JLK: 2975-3050fps

    6mm 105 Berger BC: .556
    6.5mm 130 Berger BC: .565
    6.5mm 130 JLK BC: .620

    The above BC's are what we have found to be correct our to 1500 yds with the 6.5's and 1250 with the 6mm. We have shot these from sea level to 8500' elevation. Oh, the above velocities are with 26" barrels.

    Travis
     
  13. lovdasnow

    lovdasnow Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    953
    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2005
    great post TMR, very nice to hear from someone that has been shooting one or in this case both the rounds I was considering.

    I think I will be going with the 6.5. It will be close enough to my RUM, but still have a little better barrel life than the 6x47.


    thanks again!
     
  14. trebark

    trebark Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    3,475
    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2008